Since graduating from Queensland College of Art (Griffith University) in 2017 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, majoring in Interdisciplinary Print Media, Tamika Grant-Iramu has continued to develop her practice in relief printmaking. Through her creative practice, Tamika is interested in exploring identity and finding ways of connecting with the different threads of her Papua New Guinean, European and Torres Strait Islander heritage. The carving techniques and storytelling aesthetics of Torres Strait Islander and Papua New Guinean culture combined with the Western influences of Tamika’s upbringing converge in her emergent practice as she explores and grows her own story.
Inspired by the immediate environment of Brisbane, Tamika’s practice focuses on minute areas of native flora and from these observations she creates a diverse range of organic patterns and forms. Influenced by nature in its smallest form, Tamika’s work brings into focus these minute aspects of the natural environment that often go unnoticed. The relationship she has with the process of carving corresponds to the strength and fluidity of her natural environment, the constant randomness that arises from the directions in which she carves allows newly discovered forms to grow. There is an importance in the connection between the artistic process and herself as the medium, as it allows a new dialogue to come into play. As a landscape artist, Tamika harnesses her inquisitiveness for the natural environment to delve deeper into other topographies that she encounters. Relief print carving is not simply used as a tool for visualising these environments but rather, as a way of capturing her visceral impressions of place.
Tamika’s work shot to prominence in 2018 as one of the finalists for the prestigious 2018 ‘Telstra National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art Awards’ (NATSIAA). Drawn from 308 entries, Tamika was selected amongst the 66 presented works that were to be unveiled in the NATSIAA exhibition at the Museum and Art Gallery of Northern Territory (MAGNT).
Some of Tamika’s recent achievements include:
2018 – Finalist in the 35th Telstra NATSIAA – Works on Paper Award (2018, August)
2018 – Representation with Onespace Gallery (December onwards)
2019 – Blaklash Indigenous Arts Program 2019 – Brisbane City Council
2019 – Haugesund International Festival for Artistic Relief Print at the Haugesund Art Gallery, Norway
2019 – Australia Council Grant Recipient (Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Panel)
2019 – CIAF – Onespace feature artist at CIAF 2019
2019 – ARTNOW FNQ 2019 – Cairns Regional Art Gallery Exhibition
2019 – CREATIVEMOVE: commissioned artist – Herston Hospital STARS public art project
2020 – Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) acquisition
2020 – Finalist in the 2020 National Works on Paper Awards, Mornington Peninsular Art Gallery, VIC
Tamika Grant-Iramu Carving Memories: a new dialect Works available
ONExchange Conversation: Dr. Louise Martin-Chew + Tamika Grant-Iramu Dr. Louise Martin-Chew is the author of the catalogue essay for Tamika Grant-Iramu’s first solo exhibition, Fragments: a